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ABC: Indigenous elder Leslie Schultz finds voice at United Nations

Leslie Schultz, a Ngadju elder from Western Australia's Goldfields and a First Nations Clean Energy Network Steering Group member, has just returned from New York. 

"Nothing beats the natural bushland," Mr Schultz quipped of his time in the Big Apple. 

"It's all in the wind, and the birds in the wind.

"You are breathing … there's nothing like it."

It was other winds — the winds of change — that brought Mr Schultz to New York.

As chair of Ngadju Conservation Aboriginal Corporation, he was one of the Australian delegates at the 22nd session of the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues.  

The strong connection Indigenous peoples have with the land and its resources makes them vulnerable to the effects of climate change, the focus of this year's UN forum.

Mr Schultz said the global threat of climate change had not been caused by Indigenous people, but could be mitigated by them.

"We are one of the axes to the solution. We always have been, for thousands of years," he said. 

Mr Schultz is glad to see that, at an international level, there is a push to implement Indigenous concepts and ideas, which have proven effective.